It has taken a while, but we have now reached the time where workforces are returning to the office. In fact, 44% of the nation have now returned back for 3 days a week or less, exhibiting a hybrid approach to working.
Following a prolonged period of WFH, many employees now find themselves having to accustom themselves back to their regular office routine. With some individuals working remotely for almost 15 months this transition can present an uncertain time after gaining a new sense of flexibility and independence during the pandemic.
However, being back to the ‘old normal’ yields opportunities to thrive and flourish to our full potential. A working model that has experienced years of proven success and progress through collaboratively working in shared environments. As restrictions ease, we want to also ease your mind about moving back into your office; just keep reading to find out why this is so important!
Whilst working from home, particularly over an extended period, ones network is likely to shrink to those they only directly need to work with. Whether it be a spontaneous conversation in the corridor, canteen or even the car park opportunities to connect with colleagues outside the meeting rooms can hold a lot of value for professional growth and developing communication skills. With a virtual set-up, these important interactions can easily be missed.
Often WFH can mean the lines are blurred between your personal and professional space. Where work is now home and staying at home often feels like work, a buffer between these environments is vital so each location can serve its separate functions. Ultimately, this distinction will lead to an increase in motivation and productivity as well as getting to enjoy those office perks – think gym, canteen, and equipment!
Some of the best ideas often evolve through a collaboration of individuals where thoughts are bouncing and growing from one another. This style of discussion is much easier without emails and video meetings as often body language is missed, technology could lag and overall the excitement of this process is lost.
An office space directly shapes a company’s culture as well as its identity. Think Google or YouTube that are associated with their unique workspaces featuring slides, swimming pools and even rock climbing walls! When teams are solely connected virtually, there can be a loss of sense of belonging and connection to the company’s culture. Just being surrounded by the company’s aesthetic and architecture can reinforce this engagement where retention will grow accordingly.
Although it is claimed that working remotely can help to increase productivity, challenges may also arise from this. With the freedom to move around and the tempting distractions of:
Can make it difficult to stay focused on the tasks you are working on. More so, working from home can heighten feelings of isolation and therefore not being motivated to work productively. With this loss, employees will lack the drive to become better versions of themselves – which is key for long-term success and growth.
In short, offices bring great value to a company that goes beyond gathering people and completing tasks. They are important to produce ideas, socialise and maintain a healthy work-life. Whilst in the current climate, working from home can prove to be the safest option yet the office should not be looked over permanently or in a negative light as it can be an opportunity to flourish, thrive and re-strengthen employees bond with their workplace.